Drought continues to impact Kansas wheat fields, more rain needed

Those located near the Kansas-Oklahoma state line say they're concerned about their wheat crop.
Published: May. 10, 2022 at 9:51 PM CDT
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Drought concerns continue for Kansas farmers, and there is an immediate need for precipitation.

Alan Patterson lives in Anthony. He says the recent rain has caused his wheat crop to perk up, but having gone nearly eight months without rain, still creates issues for the wheat crops ahead of June’s harvest.

“You know it’s gotta rain. We’re in an area where we generally receive 20 to 24 inches of annual precip. And unfortunately, we are probably setting, you know, somewhere around a third of normal rainfall,” said Patterson.

If you head about 20 minutes north of the Kansas-Oklahoma border, the wheat field conditions improve, but the farmers in this area are still concerned.

“We probably lost 30 to 40 percent of our yield potential here, and with the heatwave we’re having this week, that could take more off, it could shut down some of the grain fill in the heads,” said Francis Drouhard, a farmer in Danville.

Jeff Vornauf also farms in Harper County. He says the price of wheat is right, but he might be short 30 to 40 bushels to sell.

“When you owe the banks money you know, it’s concerning,” he said.

In order to have the best quality of wheat, farmers across the state need more rain soon.

“We’re going to need another shot of rain at the end of this week hopefully. Sounds like we got some chances so that would certainly help,” said Drouhard.

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